Landmark Theatres

Landmark Theatres is the largest specialised movie theatre chain in the United States dedicated to exhibiting and marketing independent and foreign films.[1]

Landmark Theatre Corporation
PredecessorParallax Theatres
FounderKim Jorgensen
Number of locations
52 theatres (2018)
Area served
United States
  • Silver Cinemas 

Since its founding in 1974, Landmark has grown to 51 theaters with 251 screens in 27 markets. Landmark Theatres is known for both its historic and newer theatres.[2]

Helmed by COO and president Paul Serwitz,[3] Landmark Theatres is part of Cohen Media Group (as of 2018).[4]



Landmark Theatre Corporation began as Parallax Theatres which was founded in 1974 by Kim Jorgensen with the opening of the Nuart in Los Angeles, Sherman in Sherman Oaks, The Rialto in South Pasadena, and Ken in San Diego. Steve Gilula and Gary Meyer became partners in 1976 as the chain expanded as Landmark.[5]

In 1976, the River Oaks Theatre[6] in Houston (which originally opened in 1939) and the single screen Oriental Theatre[7] in Milwaukee were acquired. The Oriental originally opened in July 1927 and was the only standard movie palace ever built to incorporate East Indian decor. The Harvard Exit Theatre in Seattle was acquired in 1979. The film programming in Landmark Theatres was a mix of repertory/revival double-features that changed daily. This mix also included smaller independent and foreign films and allowed Landmark to grow into the largest repertory/revival movie-theater circuit in the nation by the end of that decade.


In the early 1980s, Landmark reoriented most of their theaters to exhibit first-run specialized, foreign, and re-released classics on longer, open-ended runs. Larger single screens were converted into two or three screen theaters while preserving the external architecture.

In 1981, Landmark acquired the Neptune Theatre in Seattle. A year later, Landmark merged with Movie, Inc., from Santa Fe. Movie, Inc., another small company capitalizing on the excellence of foreign, alternative, and classic films. In 1988, The Oriental Theatre in Milwaukee was converted to a triplex by adding 2 theaters underneath the balcony. The original artwork of the main auditorium was left untouched. Additionally, Canal Place Cinema (4 screens) opened on the edge of New Orleans' French Quarter making it Landmark's first new build. 1989 brought a merger between Landmark and the Seven Gables theater circuit from Seattle and Portland.[8] Landmark was purchased by Heritage Entertainment.


In the early 1990¹s, Landmark began renovations of its historic buildings, and began developing new multiplex theaters of its own. Landmark was acquired by the Samuel Goldwyn Company in 1990. The new locations included: the Westside Pavilion in Los Angeles, the Embarcadero in San Francisco¹s Financial District, the Embassy in Waltham, MA outside of Boston, the Plaza Frontenac in St. Louis, the Century Center in Chicago and the Renaissance outside of Chicago in Highland Park, IL. In 1998, Landmark was acquired by Silver Cinemas and began operating a small group of discount theaters including: the Bell Road, the Superstition, The Yukon, the Golden Triangle, the Macomb, the Joliet, the Budget South, the East Town Green Bay, the Market Square and the Poughkeepsie theaters.


Landmark was brought out of Silver Cinemas' bankruptcy by Oaktree Capital,[9] allowing the construction and opening of the Sunshine, Bethesda Row and E Street Cinemas. On September 24, 2003, Landmark was acquired by 2929 Entertainment,[10] the Magnolia Pictures¹ exhibition wing folded into Landmark Theatres. Digital Cinema was introduced.

In 2005, Landmark was the first exhibition circuit to deploy Sony 4K cinema;[11] in-theater digital signage was introduced. In Indianapolis, Landmark opened the Keystone Art Cinema & Indie Lounge. The cinema had 7 auditoriums; the lounge featured plasma televisions and allowed all moviegoers to bring their drinks into the auditoriums. And, the Inwood Theater and Nuart Theater were renovated.

2006 brought the introduction of Vertical integration with the release of BUBBLE by Steven Soderbergh.[12] The film played day-and-date, as it was simultaneously released in Landmark Theatres, broadcast on HDNet Movies and sold on DVD.

In 2007, Landmark Theatres acquired the Ritz Theatre Group[13] in Philadelphia which consisted of the Ritz East, Ritz at the Bourse and Ritz V. Landmark opened their flagship theater in Los Angeles,[14] The Landmark.[15] Later that year, Landmark also opened Harbor East[16] in Baltimore and The Landmark Theatre, Greenwood Village in Denver.

In 2008, Landmark held its first live 3D/HD NBA game televised live via satellite to the Magnolia Theatre in Dallas. On March 1, Landmark assumed operation of the 7 screen Gateway Theatre, located in Columbus, Ohio. The theater featured a café, bar, and event space.[17]

The Shattuck Cinemas in Berkeley received a comprehensive remodel in 2009 including new theater seating, lighting and carpets. Lot 68, a bar and café adjacent to the lobby, also opened its doors inside the Shattuck. Landmark entered the 3D arena with 3 locations operating 3D Projection: the Harbor East in Baltimore, the Tivoli in St. Louis and The Landmark in Los Angeles.


Landmark assumed operation of the Glendale 12 in Indianapolis in 2010 as well as the Olde Town Stadium theater in Arvada, Colorado. In addition, the Piedmont Theatre in Oakland, California was restored, receiving new screens and new auditorium seating in addition to carpets and lighting.

In Spring 2011, Landmark Theatres was put up for sale,[18] and after receiving multiple bids, was taken off the market.

Beginning in 2012, Landmark continued renovating its theaters. The Uptown,[19] Minneapolis, reopened in its new incarnation on September 14, 2012 which included reserved ticketing and full bar service while still preserving a balcony and a 50-foot tower, originally placed to mark the Uptown area. In October 2012, the Chez Theatre, Denver, and the Magnolia, Dallas, were extensively renovated. Upgrades to the theaters included Barco Digital Projection, upgraded digital sound and leather-style seats as well as The Magnolia Bar, a cocktail suite attached to the theater.

Renovations and upgrades continued at many of Landmark's theaters in 2013. The E Street Cinema in Washington, D.C. opened a bar. The Bethesda Row Cinema,[20] MD, located outside of Washington D.C., was completely renovated in May 2013 with new, reserved seating in all eight auditoriums and a full-service bar featuring local brews and film-themed cocktails. Located in downtown Highland Park, Chicago, Landmark¹s Renaissance Place Cinema was renovated in July 2013 with the addition of a full-service bar and lounge, an expanded concession menu and leather seating as well as two screening lounges. The Embarcadero Center Cinema, located in San Francisco¹s financial district, reopened in October 2013 after an extensive remodel which included reconfiguring the theater space to allow for two more theaters, bringing the total screen count to seven; a lounge featuring a wide variety of wine and beer was added as well as stadium seating and four Screening Lounges with electric recliners.[21] Additionally, the Embarcadero was the first movie theater in San Francisco to feature a new assistive listening system for the hearing impaired.[22] Coils were installed in each auditorium that wirelessly send pure sound to hearing aids that have the 'telecoil,' eliminating background noise and the need for a headset.

On November 7, 2013, Landmark Theatres announced that they will open an eight-screen complex in Capitol Point, an emerging mixed-use development along New York Avenue in Washington, D.C.[23]

On January 8, 2014, Landmark announced a six-screen cinema at Atlantic Plumbing,[24] a new mixed-use community at 8th and V Street, also in Washington, D.C. Atlantic Plumbing Cinema, a bar and movie theater, opened October 15, 2015.[25][26]

On November 20, 2015, Landmark Theatres acquires Albany, New York independent movie house Spectrum 8 Theatres.[27] On December 15, 2015, Landmark acquired the Nickelodeon Theatres, including the Nickelodeon and Del Mar in Santa Cruz, California, and the Aptos Cinema in Aptos, California.[28]

In December 2016, Landmark opened their luxury theatre The Landmark at Merrick Park located in the Shops at Merrick Park shopping center in Coral Gables, Florida.[29] This was the company's first location and currently only location in Florida.

In June 2017, Landmark closed their Seven Gables and Guild 45 theaters in Seattle. The official reason was to prepare for renovation, although local media disputes this saying that the theaters are closed for good.[30] In September 2017, Landmark opened their east coast flagship theatre The Landmark at 57 West in Midtown West Manhattan.[31] At the start of 2018, their other NYC location Sunshine Cinema closed.[32]

In April 2018, it was made public that Wagner/Cuban had put Landmark up for sale. The sale was finalized on December 4, 2018 and the theatre chain was purchased by Charles S. Cohen who also owns Cohen Media Group.[33]

In September 2019, the Guild Theatre in Menlo Park, CA closed.[34]

On October 24, 2019 it was announced that long-time CEO Ted Mundorff had resigned, effectively immediately.[35] Paul Serwitz was announced as the company's new COO and President on October 30, 2019.[36]


Silver Cinemas

Landmark Theatres also owns the theater chain, Silver Cinemas, which primarily shows second-run movies. As of 2018, there are three Silver Cinemas in the United States.[37][38][39]


  1. Landmark Theatres. "About Us". Archived from the original on 22 February 2010. Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  3. Jr, Mike Fleming; Jr, Mike Fleming (2019-10-30). "Longtime Regal Exec Paul Serwitz Named Landmark Theatres President/COO". Deadline. Retrieved 2019-11-08.
  4. D'Alessandro, Anthony; D'Alessandro, Anthony (2018-12-04). "Cohen Media Group Acquires Landmark Theatres From Wagner/Cuban Companies". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-12-04.
  5. Cinema Treasures. "Nuart Theatre". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  6. Cultivate Houston. "River Oaks Theatre". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  7. OnMilwaukee. "Vintage Milwaukee movie theater magic". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  8. Cline, John & Weiner, Robert G. & Gore, Chris (2010). From the Arthouse to the Grindhouse: Highbrow and Lowbrow Transgression in Cinema's First Century. Scarecrow Press Chapter 12 Art and Grind in Seattle by Dennis Nyback pp. 158-161 ISBN 9780810876545.
  9. Variety (23 April 2001). "Oaktree Nabs Silver Cinemas". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  10. Film-Tech (23 September 2003). "Cuban in Landmark deal with purchase of art house chain". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  11. Projector Central (24 October 2005). "SONY UNVEILS MARKET-READY SXRD 4K RESOLUTION PROJECTOR FOR NEW ERA OF DIGITAL CINEMA". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  12. NPR (23 September 2003). "Soderbergh's 'Bubble' Changes the Rules". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  13. The New York Times (2 April 2007). "Landmark Theatres Raise Curtain on Philadelphis Market". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  14. Roger (1 June 2007). "Theaters Try To Compete With Living Rooms". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  15. Film Journal International (25 June 2007). "A Landmark Opening". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  16. The Baltimore Sun (25 September 2007). "7 screens to open at Harbor East". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  17. "Dallas Mavericks Game Shown in 3-D". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  18. Los Angeles Times (19 April 2011). "Mark Cuban puts Landmark Theatres and Magnolia Pictures up for sale". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  19. MPR News (12 September 2012). "Uptown Theatre to reopen after facelift". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  20. Washington City Paper (26 April 2013). "Comfort is Key at Newly Renovated Bethesda Row Cinema". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  21. SF GATE (5 November 2013). "Embarcadero Center Cinema gets makeover". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  22. Hearing Health & Technology Matters! (19 June 2013). "Coming soon, to a theater near Chicago, Illinois's first hearing-looped movie house". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  23. Washington Business Journal (7 November 2013). "Landmark Theatres to open 10-screen NoMa movie theater". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  24. Washington City Paper (8 January 2014). "Landmark Theatres Coming to Atlantic Plumbing off U Street NW". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  25. Prince of Petworth (15 October 2015). "Tonight's the Night – Landmark's Atlantic Plumbing Cinema Opens Next Door to 9:30 Club – Have a Look at the Seats". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  26. Doug Rule (19 October 2015). "A Cinematic Toast: Inside Landmark's New Atlantic Plumbing Cinema". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  27. Amy Biancolli (23 October 2015). "Albany's Spectrum Theatre gets new owner". Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  28. Santa Cruz Sentinel (20 November 2015). "New owners for The Nick, Del Mar, Aptos Cinemas include NBA team owner". Retrieved 20 December 2015.
  29. Morgenstern, Hans (December 12, 2016). "The Landmark at Merrick Park Opens Friday, Mixing Mainstream and Indie Films". Miami New Times.
  30. Charles Mudede (6 June 2017). "Seven Gables and Guild 45th Theaters Closed". The Stranger. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  31. Chung, Jen. "Landmark Theatres' 8-Screen Location Will Open In NYC's 'Pyramid' Building". Gothamist. Retrieved 2018-12-04.
  32. Ferré-Sadurní, Luis (2018-01-21). "Sunshine Cinema, a Beloved Manhattan Theater, Goes Dark". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-12-04.
  33. "Landmark Theatres is sold to the production company of a billionaire real estate developer". Los Angeles Times. December 4, 2018.
  35. "Landmark Theatres CEO Ted Mundorff steps down". Los Angeles Times. 2019-10-25. Retrieved 2019-11-08.
  36. Jr, Mike Fleming; Jr, Mike Fleming (2019-10-30). "Longtime Regal Exec Paul Serwitz Named Landmark Theatres President/COO". Deadline. Retrieved 2019-11-08.
  37. "Silver Cinemas Webpage, Copyright". 27 January 2016. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  38. Macomb Daily (19 April 2015). "Silver Cinemas is out, new pizzeria is in at Macomb Mall". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  39. Bloomberg Business (27 January 2016). "Company Overview of Silver Cinemas Acquisition Co". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
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